Beth and her husband are expecting their fifth baby, a girl! Unfortunately her husband has vetoed “many popular Catholic female saints that I like like Gemma, Felicity, Kateri … We both like the name Eve, but don’t want to necessarily name her after Eve in the bible, so we thought of Genevieve or Evangeline and call her Eve, but then again none of our other kids have nicknames and we aren’t big on nicknames. We have also discussed Adrienne and found out there’s an interesting catholic author who died in the 60s named Adrienne … I would love a good strong holy saint … We also don’t want a repeat first initial so no M, J, L or S. I know, so picky. ;)”
Their other kiddos are named:
John Paul Landon (goes by John Paul)
I found this dilemma a difficult one! Not repeating initials knocked out a lot of names I thought seemed really perfect for this family! Like Lucy, and the Juli- names, all of which showed up in the lists of names similar to the ones Beth and her husband have already chosen for their kids and are considering: Julie, Julia, Juliet, Julianne, Juliana.
Also, I just have to comment on Eve — it seems to me they’ve found *THE* name for their girl! Beth said both she and her hubs like it, and it totally fits with the other kids … I love Genevieve and Evangeline, but if they’re not big into nicknames then that doesn’t seem like a great solution … so I wondered if just moving away from Eve-in-the-Bible and more toward Mary-the-New-Eve would help? I was surprised that they don’t already have a Marian name, and was totally going to suggest one, but then there’s Eve! There’s also the mysterious St. Eve of Dreux who appears in some good books, like Our Sunday Visitor’s Encyclopedia of Saints, but doesn’t have much information available.
But of course I can always come up with more suggestions. 🙂 I always shoot for three ideas:
I love that Isabel is a form of Beth’s name (whether she’s the full Elizabeth or Beth alone, Isabel’s related!), which is such a nice connection between Mom and daughter. Since Beth wanted a “good strong holy saint,” any of the Sts. Elizabeth could be a patron, but I also discovered St. Isabel of France who, according to The Catholic Baby Name Book, “was a daughter of King Louis VIII of France and Blanche of Castile. She received several offers of marriage but refused them all because she had consecrated herself to God. She devoted herself to serving the sick and poor. She also founded the Franciscan Monastery of the Humility of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Longchamps in Paris. She lived there but never became a nun.” I don’t know of too many saints who were celibate singles (as opposed to priests or religious, or children saints), so St. Isabel is distinctive in that regard, and a good example of God calling each of us to our own path.
(2) Claire or Clare or Chiara
I always look through the Baby Name Wizard book when trying to come up with ideas for families — each entry has other names listed that are similar in style/feel/popularity — and when I looked up the other kids’ first names and the names Beth is considering, Claire showed up a lot as being similar. At first I was going to suggest Clara instead, thinking two syllables was a better fit with their one-syllable last name, but then I realized Clara rhymes with Sarah. So I went back to Claire, which is different enough from Sarah in my opinion that it works fine, and I don’t mind Claire with their last name (nor do I mind Eve with it, or even Beth for that matter). If Beth has a devotion to St. Clare, that spelling is lovely too. Or Chiara, which was St. Clare’s actual name (Italian version of Clare), and a recent Bl. Chiara Luce Badano is setting the Catholic world on fire (she was young when she died of cancer — she was born in 1971, so very current and relevant for girls today — and beatified by Pope Benedict). (Claire/Clare can be an honor name for her too.)
Another name that showed up in my research was Hope, which immediately went on my list for Beth and her hubs to consider, and then I realized that Hope coupled with their last name, which begins with P, tends to reduce Hope to Ho in sound, which probably isn’t something anyone would love for their daughter. But it made me think of Faith, both because they’re similar, but also because I knew sisters growing up named Sarah and Faith. I have no other reason I like it for this family other than that it just *feels* like it would fit! I also know a little Faith currently, and I just love it on her — it’s sweet and so meaningful.
Those are my ideas for Beth’s baby girl! What do you all think? what other suggestions do you have for this family?